Horse Meat

If you read the news/go on Twitter/listen to the radio, you’ll no doubt be aware by now that several major supermarkets have cleared their shelves amidst findings from an independent report which showed beef burgers to contain up to 29% horse meat. The chances are, if you’ve eaten a burger from Tesco, you’ve probably eaten horse. Are you horrified?

I’m not.

Don’t get me wrong, the fact that they’ve sold cheap horse meat under the guise of beef is wrong for MANY reasons. The cultural implications are mind boggling, especially as 85% of the burgers also contained pig DNA, so many a kosher Jew are probably feeling rather upset right now. Also, just for the plain old fact that if you PAY for beef and you get horse, that’s morally and financially wrong. It’d be called fraud in any other circumstance, surely?

But.

What I don’t get is this; people are up in arms simply about the fact that they’ve eaten a horse and I just don’t get that mentality.

Why is a horse more sacred than a chicken, a cow or a turkey? With Christmas just gone by, are we not upset about the TEN MILLION turkeys eaten in the UK alone? I understand that people keep horses as pets and we’re all quite precious about not eating animals that are cute or handsome, but if it were a choice between my family needing food and Joey running free in the paddock, it’d be horse casserole for tea, I’m afraid.

I’m not hugely worldly when it comes to food I’ve tried but I’ve eaten kangaroo, deer and veal (though I will admit I wasn’t properly aware of what veal was before I ate it) and I just don’t get this thing that humans have about prioritising one type of animal over another when it comes to meat. Most people probably now know that pigs are as intelligent as dogs and while that’s led to a rise in the number of people keeping pigs as pets, I bet it’s barely affected the number of bacon sandwiches eaten by us Brits.

Perhaps someone could enlighten me as to why a horse is more important than a cow?

Until then, I’m going to be avoiding beef burgers; not because I don’t want to eat horse, but because if I’m buying beef it’s because I want to eat a cow!